For photography of wildlife it's essential that the photographer place the point of emphasis - the point of focus - on the subject's eyes. I recently had an opportunity to do some bird photography while visiting Pinckney Island Wildlife Refuge on the coast of South Carolina. The location is ideal for anyone who loves wildlife photography. Raptors, waders and songbirds - this area of South Carolina offers it all as well as other wildlife subjects.
For this type of photography I prefer using a set-up that includes a Canon 1D Mark III camera body matched with a Canon 500mm f4.5 and 1.4x teleconverter. Also, the Kirk King Cobra head and a Bogen monopod. It's also a good idea to be able to "throw" a bit of extra light on the subject. In the video I'm using a Canon 550ex Speedlite but without the Better Beamer attachment, which I do recommend. I had forgotten to pack it before leaving for my trip down south.
An important consideration when photographing wildlife is to ALWAYS respect the subject. Hence the advantage of shooting with "big glass."